About Us

Youth with Disabilities Forum (YDF) is civil society organisation, established in Belgrade, in 2005. YDF mission is to contribute to inclusion, advocacy and promotion of human rights through the establishment of cross-sector partnerships and other sustainable mechanisms, building and strengthening human and other resources, necessary for self-development of persons with disabilities.

YDF successfully implemented around 40 EU, UN, national and local projects with more than 1000 direct beneficiaries and up to 5000 indirect users, contributing to the development of inclusive society on local, regional and national level. The organization represents and advocates interests of persons with disabilities in several fields (education, employment, accessibility, entrepreneurship, social policy and discrimination issues), enabling improvement of the position of people with disabilities and full respect of human rights in the wider society. Key target groups of the YDF includes: persons with disabilities, families of persons with disabilities, civil society organizations, representatives of business sector, representatives of local self-governments, representatives of relevant institutions: National employment service, Centers for social welfare, educational institutions. During the last period, organization has built sustainable cross-sector partnerships with representatives of public and private sector developing innovative solutions for improvement the position of persons with disabilities. Relevant donors recognize our activities as high quality and result oriented actions.

Organization has 2 employees, 3 people engaged by service contracts and 1 volonteer.

During the last 10 years, Youth with Disabilities Forum successfully managed numerous donor projects (budgets from 3.000 EUR to 100.000 EUR).

In the last 3 years, YDF has been recognized as well known expert organization dealing with the improvement of  the position of persons with disabilities on the national, regional and local level.

Main arias that YDF covered during the last 3 years were:

Development and monitoring of the community based services for persons with disabilities: YDF implemented activities that contributed to enhancement of civil society in social inclusion sector, by linking and strengthening existing and new community based service providers in fields of social protection, education and employment, enabling their massification and quality advancement, as well as persons with disabilities position improvement. Results:

The program for standardization of community based services was developed and implemented with 60 service providers

program for sustainable partnerships for community based services implementation was designed and implemented with 69 service providers

Online platform on community-based services (www.servisipodrske.info) was designed and implemented to provide insight into the development of support services and their territorial representation. More than 40 profiles were created, with up to 100 visitors monthly. (The platform was awarded as one of 39 innovative practices in the world on independent living on the fourth Zero Project Conference 2015).

5 community based services were sub-granted by our organisation (Leskovac, Pozarevac, Beogradm Kikinda, Uzice) and 109 final users – young persons with disabilities and their families – have benefitted from the service’s implementation.

– YDF is implementing the services for supporting families in the process of deinstitutionalization of persons with mental health disorders and intellectual disabilities-case conference and family counsellor.

Social entrepreneurship:

YDF implemented capacity building activities for development and implementation of social enterprises contributing to employment and self-employment of marginalized groups as well as participating in national policy advancement. Results:

“Social entrepreneurship school” for development of social business ideas was implemented for 4 years with 63 participants. In total, 30 business plans were developed. 1 social enterprise received start-up grant from YDF

-1 social enterprises fair was organized with 42 exhibitors and up to 500 visitors.

Program for innovative incubator for social business was developed, with public call announced, and 4 incubator tenants were selected.

Social inclusion: education and employment

YDF implemented activities for strengthening the individual capacities of persons with disabilities for employment, contributing to the quality life advancement, as well as raising awareness of employers. Results:

– Innovative platform for disability employment policy monitoring was created. 1 Survey realized with 465 employees with disabilities, 194 unemployed persons with disabilities and 284 employers.

Educational program for disability employment rights monitoring implemented with 65 participants from 25 municipalities in Serbia

– 6 public debates realized for creation of recommendation with 89 participants, 6 thematic local coalitions created for disability employment issues in 6 cities

Program for career guidance of disadvantages youth was developed and implemented in 4 selected municipalities with 132 disadvantaged and other youth, 38 parents involved and 22 educating and mentoring staff of high schools (teachers, pedagogics, and psychologists). Program was certified at Institute for improvement of the education.

– We own database of candidates seeking for employment and connect them with employers.

“Inclusive academy” was designed and implemented for strengthening the capacities of persons with disabilities for employment at open labour market, for 4 years with 50 participants. After education, up to 35 participants have got employment.

20 contracts were signed with the companies for support in employment of persons with disabilities. Up to 150 persons employed after the program implementation.

5 educational programs with 5 schools in 5 cities were implemented for the improvement of inclusive education in secondary schools, with up to 100 pupils.